"There should be no impossible in our life."
Women in Business: Dr Shamsa Abdulla Bin Hammad
Region: United Arab Emirates
With nationalization quotas playing a more significant role in recruitment across all sectors and industries with every passing year, we continue to work with professional, well educated and highly experienced Arab Nationals across the Gulf. At the senior levels we are seeing more loyalty and commitment to employers than ever before as well as a real desire for career development and a constant challenge.
As women play more and more of a role in the business world across the Gulf, we wanted to look at what it means to be a woman in the world of work here, find out more about their experiences and see what advice they would offer to other female GCC nationals looking to develop their own professional career.
Shamsa, thanks for taking time out of your busy schedule and joining us today. Can you start by telling us about yourself, background, and your role at Medcare?
Thanks Alice. My name is Dr. Shamsa Abdulla Bin Hammad, I’m a motivated leader, strategic thinker, and a member of the Mohammed Bin Rashid Leadership Program (impactful leader). I’m a doctor by profession (Consultant - Family Medicine) and working currently as COO of Medcare Women and Children’s Hospital. I have a total of 17 years’ experience in the healthcare industry in both government and private sectors.
I’m really intrigued to hear your story Shamsa. So how did you get where you are today, from Doctor to COO?
I’m a challenger. I love to convert challenges to opportunities which in turn, leads to success. Sometimes taking myself out of my comfort zone. I am a positive thinker, always working towards improving and escalating processes to the next level.
I love that, a ‘Challenger’, it sounds exciting. So Shamsa, why is gender balance and having a more diverse workforce important, especially in senior management teams?
Diversity collects varieties of different skills, experiences and opinions which leads to new ideas, creativities and innovation that leads to successful strategic planning and perspectives. When different backgrounds and perspectives come together, more solutions follow, which leads to a more informed and improved decision-making process (and results).
The UAE is aiming to achieve full empowerment of Emirati women by increasing female representation in the Federal National Council to 50% , we have the first female Minister of Youth HE Shamma Almazroni , first Minister of Happiness HE Ohood Alroumi, and we have plenty more examples of women leaders in UAE.
It’s really good to see Emirati women rise up into these senior roles. So how do you get there? What are some strategies that can help women achieve a more prominent role in their organisations?
Do you know what? I think that, still, I didn’t get there. I have a dream and I’m working for that dream. But I’m on the right track and achieving my goals step by step. My strategies for that are to focus on my goals, to stand firm and not be afraid of the challenges thrown my way. To always be eager to learn and keep up with fast paced environment, to be resilient.
I was working at Dubai Health Authority for 14 years with different roles, I had passion to create new ideas and implement these into reality. I took the challenge of changing my career path from the government to the private sector which was new for me! I’ve since realized this is the best decision I’ve made in my life to date, as I’ve learnt a lot from challenges and focused more to achieve the best.
I have always envisioned myself as a leader that has a positive impact in any organization and in the community to which I belong.
They always say, if you don’t try it, you’ll always wonder! So as you’re always working to improve and push yourself, what is an area of the corporate world that you still think needs improvement?
Sometimes in the corporate world I think it is easy to overlook the importance of investing in your people, in their talent and skills. In any corporate world, people in the organization is your asset. And I can say especially in Healthcare industry.
You’re more likely to retain your staff if you invest in them as well. Next question - what is the most important lesson you’ve learned in your career to date?
There should be no impossible in our life. If we want to do something or achieve it, just work for it and find ways to achieve it.
If you failed, never give up, learn from your failures, find new ways to have the best opportunity success.
Well I’m sure this interview will certainly be helpful for many of our followers that feel like they’re facing the impossible right now. What one thing do you believe has been a major factor in your success?
My drive to achieve my goals and a positive mindset, so that whatever challenges I encounter, I can use these an opportunity to learn new things, to push my limits and to become a better version of myself. To never stop learning, to never dwell in my comfort zone. If I fail I don’t stop, I work harder to smarter to achieve my goal.
It definitely seems like your strong personality and ability to push yourself on has really contributed to your success Shamsa. Have you always had this mind set? If you could give one piece of advice to your younger self what would it be?
My advice would be to set your goals high and believe in yourself that no matter how impossible it feels, if you work hard for it, surely you can achieve it. I would say that the sky is not the limit, you can reach beyond that. Opportunities are limitless.
I feel so motivated right now! Thank you so much Dr Shamsa, for your time and for sharing your experiences with us today. We wish you all the best in all your current and future ventures!
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